Sponsored by

Comments on

Raising taxes the Arizona way

Pima County home owners are looking at higher taxes and the story behind it is everything that makes Arizona politics this comically sinister. Here's how a taxpayer protection from 1980 led to a tax hike in 2015. ... Read more»

have your say   

4 comments on this story

May 8, 2015, 1:18 pm
-2 +4

Sugar Ray said no, and his voters thanked him by electing him to his first of five terms

Actually no. Voters thanked him by electing him to his second of five terms, the first of which was a partial term. Carroll has been elected to four terms as supervisor: in 2000, 2004, 2008, and 2012. His first term began by appointment in 1997, following the unexpected death of Supervisor John Even.

The peer thing is also important though, because Pima County is out of whack with other counties in property taxes because Pima is the only county without a sales tax.

Wrong. Pima County has had a 1/2 cent sales tax for transportation since 2006.

All of Pima County’s expenses get paid with property taxes — not that they haven’t tried.

Not even near true. Pima County’s expenses get paid from a diversity of funding sources that vary considerably from one department to the next. Like other counties and municipalities, Pima County’s operations are a combination of general fund, enterprise funds, special revenue funds, etc. About 60% of Pima County’s general fund revenue comes from its primary property tax. About 20% comes from state-shared revenue. The rest comes from a variety of sources, including interdepartmental charges, license and permitting fees, and many others.

In March, the Assessment Board took the quick and dirty way out and declared that any taxing jurisdiction with higher than average property taxes must pay the bill. Nice try.

There is no such entity in Arizona as the “Assessment Board.” Maybe you’re thinking of the Property Tax Oversight Commission (PTOC)? If so, they made no such declaration. The cost-shifting provisions in Section K of SB 1476, which is what you’ve quoted in the article, charge PTOC with the responsibility of determining what jurisdictions owe. But the legislature made the law; not PTOC or whatever you mean by “Assessment Board.”

Truth be told your primary tax won’t go up — but the county plan is to raise taxes for the Library District, which shows up on a separate tax bill.

Wrong. Your library tax shows up as a line item on the same bill as all your other property taxes.

May 8, 2015, 7:05 pm
-0 +3

One additional historical fact re:  1978 and Prop. 13.  AZ voters had a choice between 2 competing amendments.  The one that became law, while bad, was marginally better than the Heisler Amendment which was proposed by a character named Bill Heisler (sp?) who flamed out a few years later.  He got his proposal on the ballot by getting it funded out of California.  It was terrible.  I appeared on a local talk show with then State Senator Jim Kolbe in which we discussed the way to vote.  I distinctly remember saying we were being given a choice between a rock and a hard place.  The Legislature came up with its amendment to stop the Heisler proposal but still appear to be riding the tax blocking bronco.  What we predicted would be bad for our state has certainly been true.

May 10, 2015, 6:06 pm
-1 +1

My head is about to explode.

May 15, 2015, 12:10 pm
-0 +1

Mr. Tater,
Thank you for pointing out a couple spots where finer points were needed.. Feel free to friend me on facebook and let me know. Always appreciate it. However a couple of your corrections are just wrong and may mislead people. Ray Carroll won a special election in 1998 after being appointed, beating Brenda Even and another guy, lesser known. I counted that as a term, using the state constitutions definition under term limits. 1998, 2000, 2004, 2008, 2012. Five.Also the number I used specifically carved out the library tax. The star used the $27 figure, which would include $10 for library tax and $17 to cover new expenses. It’s the $17 tax increase that the homeowners won’t (but everyone else will) pay in most cases.
While you are correct that the county has a road program approved by voters in 2005, paid with a half cent sale tax. That money is non-existent as far as new expenses on the general fund and the county can not raise taxes to offset PRIMMARY property taxes without a unanimous board vote. Pima does not have one of those.However, that did require a brighter line, thank you. It leads to “not even near true” about all the pots of money. Correct, most revenues the county takes in are in the form of enterprise funds, grants and even sec property taxes. None of this is available for general purposes of new state mandates without cost allocation. Cost allocation itself, is a form of restricted use.
The assessment commission should have been changed to match the term oversight board. They averaged the county tax rate as a definition of peers.
I take it that you too would agree to the convoluted nature of the tax increase.
Again, thanks for reading and pointing stuff out.

Sorry, we missed your input...

You must be logged in or register to comment

Click to enlarge


A panorama of the Arizona State Capitol complex.


news, politics & government, business, education, local, arizona, opinion, analysis, breaking, columnist
Sponsored by

Top Commenters

  • Bret Linden: 1766
  • Dylan Smith: 540
  • Cactus Dave: 339
  • buddhaboy: 316
  • Roberto De Vido: 270
  • Brittanicus: 176
  • Quietwoman2: 172
  • EllieMae: 152
  • TucsonGirl: 116
  • janamg: 88
Sponsored by


I want to help TucsonSentinel.com offer a real news alternative!

We're committed to making quality news accessible; we'll never set up a paywall or charge for our site. But we rely on your support to bring you independent news without the spin. Use our convenient PayPal/credit card donation form below or contact us at donate@tucsonsentinel.com today.

Subscribe and stretch your donation over time:

$10/mo. Printer's Devil
$15/mo. Cub Reporter
$20/mo. Stringer
$40/mo. Correspondent
$50/mo. Senior Correspondent
Enter your own monthly amount (number only)

Or give a secure one-time gift with PayPal or your credit card:

$5,000 Newshound
$2,500 Copy desk chief
$1,000 Trusted source
$500 Correspondent
$250 Stringer
$100 Cub reporter
$50 Printer's Devil
$25 Informed Source
$10 Dear Reader
Enter your own amount (below)

TucsonSentinel.com is an Arizona nonprofit organization fiscally sponsored by FCIR.org, a 501c3 charity. Your contribution is tax-deductible.

User Guidelines

Please be respectful and relevant. Thought-provoking. Or at least funny.

We want comments to advance the discussion and we need your help. Debate, disagree, yell (digitally) or laugh, but do it with respect.

We won't censor your comments if we don't agree with you; we want viewpoints from across the political spectrum. We're dedicated to sparking an open, active discussion. We believe people with differing opinions can spark debate and effect change.

Comments are open to registered users of TucsonSentinel.com.

Keep in mind:

  • A conversation involves sharing and respect. Support your viewpoint with facts, not attacks.
  • Ask questions. Search out answers.
  • Remember that being part of a community requires tolerance for differing views.
  • We can't ensure that all comments are based in truth. The only comments we endorse are those we write ourselves.

TucsonSentinel.com does not allow:

  • Hate speech. Blatantly racist, sexist or homophobic slurs or calls for violence against a particular type of person, etc. will be removed.
  • Obscenity & excessive cursing. Sometimes a well-placed curse word - if you're creative enough to get it past our auto-censor - can express your point in just the right way. But we say '%*$& no' to cursing for cursing's sake. And lose the explicit sexually-descriptive language. It doesn't contribute to the debate and there are plenty of other places on the Internet to find it.
  • Flaming. During a heated discussion, unkind words may be spoken. We can live with a certain amount of rudeness in the name of provocative conversation, but a pattern of personal attacks (name-calling, mocking, or baiting) is not acceptable nor are threatening or harassing comments. Show some respect, please.
  • Explicit political endorsements. As a nonprofit we can't allow electioneering. Analysis and explanation of political issues and candidates are encouraged, but specific calls to vote for or against a measure or politician should be done elsewhere.
  • Spam. Solicitation of products or services isn't allowed; contact us about advertising, we'd love to talk to you. Links to off-topic sites may be deleted.
  • Copyright or IP infringement. Lengthy quotes and violations of 'Fair Use' aren't allowed. Anything you post should be your own work.
  • Overposting. Don't bore people and waste electrons with identical comments on multiple stories or repetitive comments that don't advance a conversation.
  • Trolling, sockpuppetry, and other abusive behavior. Please don't feed the trolls and don't pretend to be someone you're not.
  • Gossip. Don't bring up others who can't defend themselves. We don't give out personal information; you shouldn't either.

Comments that violate these guidelines may be removed. We reserve the right to make up the rules as we go along.


Commentors are solely responsible for the opinions they express and the accuracy of the information they provide. Users who violate these standards may lose their privileges on TucsonSentinel.com.

Sentinel editors can't read every comment. Trolls, spammers and other troublemakers can slide under the bridge. We rely on you to help maintain a healthy conversation - more than likely, you're reading these comments before the editors.

What if you see something inappropriate? Use the 'Flag' button to send it to a moderation queue. Help us out and tell us why you're reporting it; please don't report someone just because you disagree with them. Boy who cried wolf and all that. We'll take appropriate action on violations.

We will not edit comments to alter their meaning or censor comments because of political content.

We will not remove comments solely because they are heartless, cruel, coarse, foolish or just plain wrong. Your disapproval can maintain a decent signal to noise ratio. Ultimately, however, self-policing is the best method.

Bottom line, don't be a jerk.

Sign up for TucsonSentinel.com email newsletters!

find us on facebook
Sponsored by
Sponsored by
Sponsored by